21 January 2019

Grant awarded to Leonard Rutgers, Ortal-Paz Saar and Digital Humanities Lab

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Prof. Leonard Rutgers (Ancient History), Dr Ortal-Paz Saar (Ancient History), and the Utrecht University Digital Humanities Lab directed by Dr José de Kruif, have been awarded a 22,000 Euros grant from the Innovation Fund for IT in Research.

The grant is meant for a new project titled "A Time to Every Purpose under Heaven: Extracting Dates from Hebrew and Aramaic Texts". The historians and the DH Lab (particularly developers Jelte van Boheemen and Sheean Spoel) will create a novel algorithm for automatically extracting dates from historic Hebrew and Aramaic texts, such as Jewish funerary inscriptions, rabbinic and responsa literature.

standardized dates

These dates will then be mapped to standardized dates: Gregorian and GODOT, and the algorithm will be freely available on Github. Such a tool will be greatly valuable for history, religious studies, and archaeology, as well as linguistics and related disciplines.